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To Tell The Truth

The Ten Commandments of the Mosaic Law on a mo...

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Our pastor spoke on the subject of “Truth” on Sunday.  It is part of his series on “The Ten Commandments”.  Each has been thought-provoking and has made every one of us look at these commandments in a different light.

Our small group wrestled with this subject of “truth”  last night – as we revisited the message from Sunday.

Truth is very subjective.  We each have a unique way of looking at events – past and present.  We have a way of justifying our own view-point – and even twisting facts to present ourselves in a better light.  All of us our self-centered to the core – and it’s only through the grace and love of Jesus that we have any hope at all.  Outside of Him – we mess it up pretty badly.

What is truth?

The only truth we know is the person of Jesus Christ – who is Himself the embodiment of truth – the living Word of God. Apart from Him we are destined to get it only partially right – struggling with ourselves and others until we die.

People have been wrestling with the subject of truth since the Garden of Eden.  And the enemy has been trying to twist the truth so that even we start to doubt what God really said – and what He really meant when He said it.  We twist truth just enough to justify our actions. We all do it.  And though Satan is the “Father of lies” – we need to realize something about our own nature – we lie and don’t always tell the whole truth – even when we believe we have.  And sometimes we cannot point our finger and blame him.  We don’t need to look any further than our own self for the real blame. We want something – so we twist truth to get it.  We don’t want to be blamed for something that we had a part in – so we point a finger at another person or at Satan and deflect any blame off of us.  That kind of deceit is not lost on God – He knows what the score is – even if other people are fooled – even if we have even successfully fooled ourselves.

The difference between our truth and the truth of God – is that our truth can be self-centered and twisted – God’s truth is always redemptive and without agenda.

I want it.  I will lie to get it.  I will call it truth.  I am in denial.

The Word Of God sets up boundaries for us.  If we stay within the protection of those boundaries – we live a life of truth and safety.  When we step outside of God’s protection – He will not stop us – in fact He will let us do it – it’s just not the best for us – and the fall-out is enormous and does not bring lasting peace and happiness.

Truth.  What is truth?

Bill Cosby was quoted as saying, “The only time children tell the truth is when they are in pain”  They lie to get what they want – they are just not as clever as we are.  But we all do this.  When in pain – and we are forced to “come clean” with the truth   it looks a lot differently than what we had lied to ourselves about.  And sometimes saying and speaking the truth is lonely and misunderstood.  It’s not always comfortable.  In fact it’s down right miserable at times.  Simple truth is like that.  And some people get it and some don’t.

Jesus knew this.  There were those in His time that did not get it either.  Truth was way too threatening for them.  And they had Him killed because of it.

Can we always tell the truth?  Even if it hurts to say it?  Even if we know if might split apart a relationship?  Even if it will cause repercussions among family and friends?  Do I strive to live in truth?  To say only the things that are redemptive and good?  To live a life of honor and transparency?  Not always.  I’ve blown it – just like you.  But I want to model my life after Christ’s example – and it’s a start to come clean with what the truth really is – and not be satisfied with “half-truths” and “gossip” about others just to make myself appear better.

But striving to Live in truth is the only way to live.  And some day I hope to arrive there.

God Bless

Below enjoy a song from John Mayer “Say what you need to say” – one of my favorites – follow the link to “Watch this on youtube”

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Truth Or Spare?

Truth

Image by TW Collins via Flickr

Yesterday my husband and I were returning from a fun date night in the snow – after having gone to Taco Bell and then Starbucks for a cup of coffee – we were returning home when we landed on such an interesting subject – I just HAD to write a blog article about it.

We were talking about something we had seen the night before on an episode of one of our favorite shows, “House”.  In this episode, House was addressing a group of grade school kids – and said to them, ‘Everyone lies’.

We all do it – we say we don’t – but we do.  Even Bill Cosby in his book, “Bill Cosby Himself”, said – ‘I love it when people will say that they LOVE children because they are so truthful.  The only time children tell the truth is when they’re in pain’.  So true – children learn to be manipulative from a very early age – we all have done it.  We know how to twist the truth to get our way – blame someone else when something is broken – lie about being sick so we get to stay home from school – or to watch a special program on TV.

We learn it as children and then get better at it when we are grown.    Oh I don’t mean terrible lies – but everyone tells little white lies – and mostly they are harmless.  But is it ever right to tell a lie?

What about telling a lie to spare someone’s feelings?  We all have done it.  A good friend gets a really bad haircut – or a new outfit and they ask you point-blank – “How do I look?”  You wouldn’t hurt your friend for the world – and so even if it’s not great – even really bad – you lie and say, “I think you look great!”  Which you know you don’t mean – but you love them and wish to spare them. You say, “I was protecting them”.

And let’s face it.  Sometimes the cold hard truth – can be very damaging.  There are those that seem to take great pleasure in doing this.  You know the people I mean – the black and white folk who see NO GRAY and have to tell it like it is – even being brutally honest – because – hey – it’s the truth!  Usually those folks are fine with giving it – but not so great at receiving it.

Is it okay to lie a little – when it’s to protect someone?  Their delicate and fragile feelings?  What about when it’s to protect yourself? What then?

We all have some pretty interesting conversations and thoughts going on in our heads that no one can see and hear.  It would be really humiliating to have it exposed at times – because besides you and God – no one hears and sees what is going on inside.

There have been times when my husband wants to know what’s going on there – I think he may even be afraid to ask – in this new season we are in of ‘absolute honesty’ – but still I am selective about what I tell him – I don’t wish to hurt him – so I withhold the ‘truth’ a lot of times or dummy it down.  I’m sure he does this for me as well.  Everyone does this.  We would be SCARED TO DEATH to know what it is lurking in everyone’s minds.  This is why I keep a journal.  They are my private thoughts – reserved for myself.  I don’t want anyone reading it – nor should anyone.  They would misunderstand – these are my thoughts alone.

I believe that’s why people write their thoughts down – it is a way of getting them out – a way to reflect and pray – a way to allow the love of Jesus to renew and refresh – validate and kiss the ideas, questions and inspirations that come from living, failing, hurting and struggling and then ultimately finding that in doing so – brings perspective and healing – and a joy to begin again each new day.  They are not meant for another human being – who could get their feelings hurt – misunderstand the heart of what’s being thought about and so on.

If you’ve ever been exposed – or had things you’ve said in a journal – or to a special friend come out – to another person completely out of context – then you know the pain in which I am referring.  Those thoughts that were not meant for others to see – But that were the internal questioning, searching and struggling that was meant for someone you trust and for God – to help and bring perspective your troubled and questioning soul.

Can we always be completely transparent with what we are thinking and feeling?  I don’t think we can – nor do I think it’s wise.  First of all – not everyone knows us well enough for us to empty our thoughts out to them.  I believe there is a certain wisdom in being cautious and even guarded about subjects that are dicey and sensitive.  I know for me – I will never reveal things about myself to someone who I cannot trust with my life – words have an ugly way of coming back when I have not been wise and the truth can come back to bite me – my own words of authenticity – can be perceived as dangerous and rebellious to those who do not understand my heart – and motive.

So when do we reveal?  When do we spare?  I believe we need to be wise, cautious, loving and encouraging to those around us and in our world.  I believe that not every random thought needs to be said.  I believe in discretion.  But I also believe in being me – and not letting fear of what has been revealed or what may be revealed in the future about me and my words and thoughts – prevent me from being who I really am – and steal my joy.

This is a daily balancing act.  My thoughts and feelings – my internal dialogue, questions and musings that go on inside my head.

And as for the truth – we all tell it – at least our version of it. And if we’re really honest we would have to admit that we ‘spare’ way more than we ‘reveal’.  And sometime the only time we ever really tell the real truth in regard to another person – is when they are in danger, hurting or in trouble – and we need to intervene on their behalf.

Lord help me to work on me – to make me more like you – no hidden agenda – no personal gain.  Help me to love like you do – to be good, honest, kind and giving.  To live a life of integrity – but also of graciousness with all of those entrusted to me – just like you are gracious and kind to me – telling me the truth in such a way that it helps me – doesn’t hurt me – that corrects and convicts me to live better and want to be an example of your love to others.  The AMAZING thing is this:  You know me – and all my thoughts and still you accept me just the way I am.  That is freedom. Help me to model this behavior to those around me.  Help me accept people just the way they are – no questions – no opinions – no judgment.

This is the only way to live.  And that’s the truth.

God Bless

  • Show Me! (cindyholman.wordpress.com)
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Where’s Your Bucket?

Last week I went on an adventure with Greg to West Seattle.  He had to pick something up from a building supply place and then take it to a Starbucks store and fix the problem.  Greg ‘moonlights’ as a contractor for Starbucks and does random cleaning and light maintenance of several stores around the greater Seattle area – when he’s not doing a wedding or a funeral.

It was going to be just a routine ride – I was only along so he’d have some company.  We didn’t think we’d run into any traffic because we were going well before normal rush hour – and stayed off the main heavy traffic places.  It was going to be a pleasant – wonderful ride.

However…

I had a headache.  Not a very bad one – not like the ones I used to get when I had those headaches.  By those – I mean the ultimate  ‘Granddaddy’ of all headaches – and I wrote an article on what mine are like – here it is:  “My Fear Button”.  This was not one of those. Just a little nagging thing – hurting above my right eyebrow – but not bad enough to keep me home.

We came to the first place to pick up what Greg needed to get – a building supply place.  He was gone for several minutes and my head really starting to hurt.  He got what he needed and we headed down the road – but as we continued along we soon found ourselves in some wicked traffic.  We had even taken an alternate route – knowing that one freeway had heavy construction on it.  It didn’t seem to matter – everyone in the city was taking our little ‘short cut’ to another way around it.

Soon I knew that this was no ordinary headache.  I was starting to feel sick to my stomach too.  This was bad.  Very bad. I was soon envisioning another episode in the truck – involving a ‘hurling’ and my husband being humiliated.  I asked if we had a bucket in the truck – and Greg  (by now was a little panicky) quickly looked around and said – “No!  No bucket – you will just have to wait”  Easy for him to say.  I remembered that my “Cindy Box” was in the truck – (those of you who follow my blog know about my ‘box’ – those who do not – can click on “Cindy Box” and read up on it).  Of course it was filled with all my necessary products – I need them.  No ‘male’ operated  truck that carries a ‘female’ should be without these products – it’s really easier on the relationship and marriage.  I said, “Greg – can you reach my “Cindy Box”?”  I saw his eyes grow large with alarm as he said, “It’s full – you can’t use that!”

It reminded me of when Bill Cosby’s wife was going into labor and she started to have painful contractions in the car and Bill said, “No dear – WAIT!!!  I’ll pull over – not in the car dear – NOT IN THE FERRARI!

It wasn’t very funny at the time – especially when Greg told me I’d have to hang on until the next exit.  I’m like, “It doesn’t work that way Greg!”  But hang on I did – and when we finally got off the freeway – I was white as a sheet working very hard to think about ‘puppies’ and ‘snowflakes’ and ‘teddy bears’ – anything but food and throwing up!!  Greg pulled up next to an office building and quickly jumped out – scooped up my ‘box’ and emptied it so I would have a container for the rest of the ride.  Smart man.  He knows too well that I have used a container and I probably will again.  After getting out and getting some fresh air – I felt well enough to jump back in for the rest of the painfully slow ride to the Starbucks.

After arriving  – a hot cup of coffee (caffeine is very good for headaches) and time out of the vehicle really felt good!  I was not headache free – but at least it was manageable.  I have found that my headaches and stomach aches  run together – almost indistinguishable at times.  Once the pain has gone on too long in the head – the stomach reacts.  It’s a given.

Well I’m thankful to report – I did not have to disgrace my “Cindy Box” in any way – and humiliate my sensitive and easily embarrassed sweet husband.  The ‘items’ of necessity are all safety back in place – and I was told today that the ‘bucket’ is back in the truck.  Hmmmm.  I wonder why?

Take care and God Bless

Bill Cosby At His finest!

I came across this video today as I was browsing through blogs – and you HAVE to watch this – it will tickle your funny bone!! I LOVE people from the south!!

The Truth Will Set You Free….But First It Will Make You Miserable…

My dear Husband is turning 50 in December.  Right before Christmas.  It should be against the law to have babies in the month of December – but despite my complaining about this EVERY year – he still keeps having birthday’s.  This year is the BIG 50.  It is a HUGE landmark – and we plan to celebrate with all the trimmings.  I’m very glad to do this – you see he’s YEARS older than I am – and I don’t plan to hit that HUGE landmark in the very near future – Nope – I was a mere child when he married me.  And he will have to go it ALONE.

We’ve been reading Bill Cosby on the subject of “aging”.  Bill Cosby was turning 50 when he wrote that book – and it’s hilarious to read his accounts of the old body breaking down and not doing what it’s supposed to etc.  And HE was an athlete in his younger days!!  Not much hope for the rest of us.  I think Greg really realized that he wasn’t 20 years old anymore about 10 years ago when he was playing on a city softball team.  He found out (rather painfully) that the old throwing arm was NOT going to cooperate anymore.  Period.  Almost blew out his whole shoulder.  That’s when he knew the “good old days” were gone forever.

And those extra pounds that just appear? None of us are immune it seems.  I was reminded of a book we have had on our shelf for years – written by the late Jaime Buckingham – entitled “The truth will set you free…but first it will make you miserable”.  If you can get your hands on this book – it is HILARIOUS and well worth the read.  He covers everything from church politics – to aging and being a husband and father.  There is this one chapter where he talking about becoming older and gaining the old “love handles” that guys so often get after a certain age.

I consulted my friend, Harvey Hester, who is a psychotherapist.  Other than the fact that he was definitely neurotic, had a sick sense of humor and was fatter than I, I felt I could trust him.  He suggested a test I could perform to determine whether I really needed to lose weight or not.

“A lot of fat people are actually in marvelous shape,” he said, mentioning Russian weightlifters and those big Japanese wrestlers who wear diapers.  He said I should strip off all my clothes and lie down flat on the floor.  Then I should push myself up into a headstand.  He said if I had problems with this, I should get my wife, Jackie to hold my feet to steady me.  If she broke out into gales of laughter I should ignore it and continue the exercise.  (Statistics prove that very few wives are capable of holding the feet of their naked husbands, while they are standing on their heads, without giggling.)  the other thing he told me to watch out for would be her tendency to tickle me behind the knees.  In fact it would be best if I could learn to stand on my head unassisted.

The purpose of this, he said, was to test my physical responses.  Temporary deafness and nausea were to be expected.  These are merely symptoms of middle age.  The thing I should check for, he pointed out, was blindness.

“If everything goes dark and you have trouble breathing, you have a serious problem,” he said seriously.  “It means your fat has slipped down and covered your head.”

He then broke into hilarious laughter and staggered out of his office clutching his sides, repeating his sick joke to all the people waiting in his front office.  Most of them laughed so hard they got healed and didn’t have to keep their appointments, meaning he lost hundreds of dollars for which I was glad.

Have an AWESOME day – and don’t worry about the truth about getting older – it happens to all of us – eventually.  And there is freedom in admitting it – but first it WILL make you miserable.

God Bless

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